HGTV’s ‘Windy City Rehab’ stars resume work after Chicago lifts stop-work orders: report
The stars of HGTV’s hit program “Windy City Rehab” are back at work after nearly four months of delayed construction after the city of Chicago lifted several stop-work orders, according to a new report.
Alison Victoria Gramenos and Donovan Eckhardt were blocked in July by the city from filing new work permits after a series of alleged code and permit violations.
Eckhardt’s real estate developer and general contractor licenses were suspended by the Chicago Department of Buildings, according to letters addressed to the series’ stars that were provided to Fox News at the time. As a result, the hosts were barred from finding new properties to work on and stop-work signs were posted at several of their properties in development.
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However, the nonprofit news organization Block Club Chicago reported Tuesday that Gregg Cunningham, a spokesperson for the Department of Buildings, said that nearly a dozen of the stop-work orders that were levied against Gramenos and Eckhardt’s properties have been lifted.
Despite the victory, the hosts still aren’t permitted to file new work orders, as they reportedly still remain blocked from doing so by virtue of the initial suspension in July.
The duo was accused of performing work on 11 different properties that required a permit without obtaining one beforehand, working outside of plans that were approved by the city without getting proper permission and allegedly making a false statement on a permit application, or aiding and abetting another in making a false statement.
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They were also accused of failing to get a final inspection on a property before allowing people to occupy the space.
The host team is only allowed to go back to work on the existing buildings, as the stop-work orders that were lifted were removed to “correct past violations,” according to Cunningham.
The city’s decision to lift the restrictions is “in effect indefinitely until the issues at all these properties have been addressed to satisfaction of the Department of Buildings,” Cunningham said.
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“We’re still monitoring the work closely, watching for any attempt to file a permit using a different name. [We are] watching closely for any attempt to circumvent our process here,” he added.
According to the Chicago Tribune, HGTV greenlit a 10-episode second season of the show in February, which was in production when the hosts received their suspensions. The outlet said at the time that the crew could be unable to work in the city for a year, but representatives for HGTV told Fox News that “Windy City Rehab” was still in production.
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“Issues related to Windy City Rehab have been carefully reviewed. Appropriate parties are in communication with local building officials and working to resolve any outstanding issues. Season two of the series is currently in production,” a spokesperson for the network said in a statement at the time.
Fox News’ Tyler McCarthy contributed to this report.
Julius is an LA Entertainment Reporter for Fox News.
Source : Julius Young Link